Technology Hacks to Make Your Life More Productive
If you’re like me, you’re always on the lookout for ways to get more done.
Here are some that I’ve found recently.
Using technology already at your disposal, ranging from your smartphone to your laptop to a desktop, can make you much, more productive. Here are a few technology life hacks that will help you stay motivated and check items off that to-do list:
Use your phone as a timer. When you have a timer running, you are much less likely to let yourself get distracted. Instead, the pressure of the countdown keeps you focused. Luckily, if you have a smartphone, you already have a very flexible, functional timer that allows you to set countdowns for any stretch of time. Twenty-five minutes is recommended, but any chunk of time that helps you get more done and focus on the task instead of being distracted is great.
Use a tool that allows you to block sites and programs that distract you. There are a wide variety of these tools available, including Chrome plugin StayFocusd and Firefox plugin LeechBlock. You create a list of websites that you want to prevent yourself from accessing (these might be notorious time-wasters like social media and gaming websites), set when you want the program to block them, and how you want them to be blocked. Now, you get all the benefits of technology, without the distractions.
Make a digital to-do list. Just about every operating system and email client has a tool that allows you to do this, but you can also download special programs and apps (like SplashShopper) specifically for making digital to-do lists. A digital to-do list is superior to a paper one, as you can sync it across multiple devices, set reminders and alarms, and keep better track of what has been done and what still needs to be done.
Combine your inboxes. Instead of bouncing from email inbox to the next, use an app or client that allows you to sync all of your inboxes into one view. There are fewer opportunities to get distracted if you only have one email to check, and you can more easily sift through the junk mail to get to just the valuable communications. That said, make sure that your inbox is not constantly open or that there is a visual or auditory cue when you get an email. Instead of leaping to answer an email the moment it comes in, do your emails in a batch. You’ll save time and won’t interrupt stretches of productivity.